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Media Release: Cyber Tracker Donation to SANParks
Date: 15th March 2013
South African National Parks together with the SANParks Honorary Rangers are proud to announce the donation of 210 Cyber Tracker GPS units by the SANParks Honorary Rangers to SANParks. This donation, to the value of more than 1.5 million rand will provide the field rangers with an important tool in the fight against poaching and provide valuable information to scientists studying the ecology of our national parks.
The Cyber Tracker software, which is loaded on to the unit, enables the field ranger to easily and accurately map field observations by means of an icon based system. The unit also has the ability to take photos for accurate data capture in the field. After each patrol the data is uploaded and captured centrally.
The program has broad conservation applications. Pinpoint reporting of the position of either a fresh poaching scene or the tracks of possible poachers, will assist in speedy follow up by specialised counter poaching units. Field observations of items such as rare animals, fire, seasonal movements and concentrations of animals and the changes in plant cover, will provide valuable data to scientist studying the ecology of the parks.
The Cyber Tracker program is not new but is based on proven technology. The program has been utilised within our national parks for a number of years and has provided valuable ecological information. The old units have however become redundant and were in serious need of replacement to prevent the program from coming to a complete stand still. The new and improved units will provide a new impetus to the program and make the technology available to many more rangers than previously.
“The SANParks Honorary Rangers has supplied us with a valuable tool in our efforts to conserve our parks and fight the rhino poaching war, “said Dr Freek Venter, KNP’s General Manager: Conservation Management, accepting the donation on behalf of Management at the official handover today (Thursday, March 14, 2013). “We want to encourage the public to support this effort further, by supporting our Honorary Rangers movement in their fundraising efforts.”
“Providing support for the counter poaching effort is one of the main aims of the SANParks Honorary Rangers. We believe that success in our national parks is key to conserving the worlds’ rhino population. We are proud to be able to assist in this tangible way and we believe that by working together, we will stop the poaching scourge,” said Mr. Janssen Davies, the national executive chairperson of the SANParks Honorary Rangers.
Sponsors who contributed to this donation include Unitrans Volkswagen, Unite against Poaching, Sasol, Edgar Droste Charitable Trust, CTrack, Deposita, ABSA, Imperial, Polycon and Mazda. Several Honorary Rangers regions also contributed nl. Johannesburg, West Rand, Lowveld, Highveld, Midrand, Bankenveld and the PEAP project.
For further information and to support conservation in our national parks visit: www.sanparksvolunteers.org
(Above) KNP General Manager: Conservation Management, Dr Freek Venter (middle left) officially receives the Cyber Tracker equipment from the SANParks Honorary Rangers. With him are: (Left) The Honorary Rangers’ National Chairperson: Rangers Support Services (Counter Poaching Project), Mr John Turner, (Middle right) the National Executive Chairperson, Mr Janssen Davies and (Right) Commanding Officer: Special Projects- SANParks, Major General Johan Jooste.
(Above) Malelane Section Ranger, Mr Albert Smith goes through training on how the Cyber Tracker gadget works.
Jointly issued by:
William Mabasa, HOD: Public Relations and Communication, Kruger National Park. Contact: Tel: 013 735 4363, cell: 082 807 3919 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Louis Lemmer, National Executive Committee: Public Relations & Communication; SANParks Honorary Rangers; Tel. 012 567 5580, email@example.com